Eta Wrobel, Event Chair; Rita K. Levy and Charles J. Rose, Co-Chairs
At the First Annual International Women's Division Luncheon in 2001, YIVO Lifetime Achievement Awards were presented to Dr. Fanya Gottesfeld Heller, author, lecturer, noted philanthropist and Chair of the YIVO International Women's Division, as well as Sima Katz, a philanthropist active in Jewish and Israeli communal affairs. The featured guest speaker was Yaffa Eliach, professor of History and Literature in the Department of Jewish Studies at Brooklyn College and author of There Once Was a World: A 900-Year Chronicle of the Shtetl Eishyshok and Hasidic Tales of the Holocaust.
Chairing the inaugural luncheon was Eta Wrobel, a founder of Akim, the Hadassah Survivors' Chapter and the YIVO Women's Committee. Co-Chairing it with her were Rita K. Levy and Charles J. Rose, both active members of the YIVO Leadership Forum committee.
"We gathered together on May 21, 2001 to honor two great women," Wrobel noted. "We also paid special tribute to two devoted YIVO volunteers," she continued. Esther Ancoli-Barbasch and Esther Mishkin each received this special honor. They are both founding members of YIVO's Women's Committee, committed volunteers at YIVO, and Holocaust survivors, who built new lives and careers in the United States.